Wednesday, March 07, 2012
ProgressNow Ranks Worst Gov Martinez Vetoes of NMLEG 2012!
War on women comes to NM with veto of women’s health program.
Veto of job funds cuts deep in struggling small towns.
After the legislature passed the first bi-partisan and unanimous budget in recent memory, Governor Susana Martinez exercised her veto power to kill off programs for women’s health, nursing home safety requirements, Main Street job creation and even her own reading coaches.
ProgressNow New Mexico completed an exhaustive review of more than 5,700 lines of the final state budget to identify the most egregious vetoes issued by the governor.
"If you are poor, female or sick, don't look to this governor's budget for any help," says Pat Davis of ProgressNow NM.
A few examples of the worst vetoes of 2012:
- After promising in her State of the State address to protect access to nursing homes for seniors, Martinez eliminated a requirement that those state-run facilities strive to eliminate “abuse, neglect and exploitation” of residents.
- After calling for funding for “reading coaches” to help children develop this critical skill, she line-item vetoed language requiring that money appropriated for this purpose be used for just that.
- A veto of funds from the Judicial Nominating Commission, charged with vetting judicial nominees, comes less than a year after three state judges resigned in high-profile bribery, DWI and sex scandals.
- Martinez continues the Republican war on women by eliminating funding for women’s health.
And the worst veto of 2012 goes to...
- Martinez eliminated an appropriation for the “Main Street Program” creating local jobs in 22 communities from Artesia to Albuquerque. The program created almost 600 jobs and spurred millions in private investment in local communities last year and was expected to do the same in 2013 before the veto.
Martinez also vetoed legislation calling for CYFD to reduce the wait time for poor families to obtain early childhood education and child care assistance, food for the homeless and poor, money to help coordinate statewide athletic and extracurricular activities for school children (state sports playoffs), library programs teaching adults to read and HIV/AIDS prevention for more than 22,000 at-risk New Mexicans.
“With a balanced and unanimous budget, the governor did not have to exercise a single veto to achieve a balanced budget,” says Pat Davis, Executive Director of ProgressNow NM. “ Instead she chose to cut health care for women and Main Street job programs. Her vetoes expose her true values, and they aren’t in line with New Mexican values.”
"These vetoes are almost laughable if the consequences weren't so serious. With a balanced budget in hand, what could possess anyone to eliminate food programs for the poor and not ask nursing homes to prevent abuse and neglect?"
The full list as well as links to the vetoes and links to the budget are available at ProgressNowNM.org .
I hope the state Democratic Party will be able to highlight these terrible cuts during the upcoming campaigns. Susana's approval ratings cannot survive once the people find out how mean these budget choices are, for her part.
Posted by: bg | Mar 8, 2012 3:40:31 PM